Victory in a European competition is certainly long overdue, but can the young lions compete with the strength of some of Europe's giants. What are the key aspects England will need to bring joy back to England this summer, I will be taking a look at some key features which could bring success for Roy's Boys?
1. Discipline, a strange one I know but definitive. To me one of the fundamental aspects in determining how this Summer's tournament will go. Not only do players need to present the talent to match that of some of Europe's top stars, but they cannot afford to let the occasion get the better of them. They must remain level headed in all situations. Remain calm on the ball, stay composed when things don't go their way, and remain mentally the stronger team in every match up. If younger members of the squad don't remain disciplined they could cause much aggravation for the rest of the team and the nation alike. If for example some of the Tottenham players perform like they did against Stamford Bridge against Chelsea, we may find ourselves leaving Paris quicker than we'd hoped.
Players like Dele Alli who with the ball at their feet can control the game, but without it can make silly fouls which could cost England further down the line. The players must work hard for each other, and remember their team mentality, not to be overwhelmed by the occasion and attempt to take matches into their own hands, the only way England will win is with fighting performances, heart and soul for 90 minutes.
2. Strength in depth. Each player who graces the shirt should be fighting for that position in the team, no half-hearted measures, those who gain a cap should earn it. No fan will be disappointed slipping out of the competition if in every game there is evidence that every player has put their last ounce of effort in to get across the line. They will praise the squad for their efforts. In some circumstances National tournaments are make or break moments for a few players within a team. This is similar for a few players within the England squad at this tournament. For example, Jamie Vardy. We know his talent is unquestionable, but doing it on the national stage is the next level, and if he was to have a poor competition, the people’s opinion of him may dramatically drop. Similarly, with Players like Jack Wilshere who have been on the edge of an England call up for a while now, and need to step up to the plate, and earn their cap, as I'm sure there are many looking to replace players like him.
3. Team work The underlying theme determining England’s success is their ability to work as a team, as Alf Ramsey once showed us, winning football is not necessarily about having the best players, but about every player having their role in the team, and acting upon that in the best possible way.
England have players who on their day can turn games around, but they don't necessarily need this. They need team players who can show the key skills together to be victorious, like Leicester City this season, the squad needs to come together and work as one, presenting themselves as a strong force which cannot be broken down no matter how hard teams try.
Overall England will have their work cut out if they are to win, but it's not entirely out of reach, if the young lions play without fear they are certainly in with a chance, and only time will tell. Could this year be our year? let’s wait and see.